Every night I think about writing. My fingers twitch. I wake and go through another day, riding that mechanical bull, thrown back here on the couch. Fingers twitch.
I tell myself I just need to get this new teaching gig under control. Just need the kids to get a little older. I just need the days to go to about 26 hours. Fingers twitch.
I’ll be walking somewhere, or pedaling my bike, and I’ll have an idea. He was a taxi driver but now he drives for Lyft but he’s the only guy who knows the city when the grid goes down. He saves the day. Even as I have the idea I know it’s probably not the idea idea, just the fuel you pour into the Whisper Lite, let it burn down, and then you light the stove.
What I’ve written above is the longest story, those three sentences? That’s the longest story I’ve written in I think months. Heck, I could even say the guy has hairy arms. Now I’m at four.
Amy, walking the lake, sends me a photo of a trash can with the mosaic words, “Read! Write! Revolution!” and says, “This should be your motto!” In a flash, though I’m riding an Amtrak train to Bakersfield at the time, I create a brand new blog: readwriterevolution.wordpress.com and think this it! The next day, driving my mom and Sochi the wonder dog north on I-5, we stop at a burger join in the middle of nowhere and open the doors to tables filled with firefighters. They are returning home from the Ventura firestorm. It doesn’t occur to me to even jot a note on my new blog. I’ve already lost interest. We drive the remainder of the 500 mile trip listening to Carole King, Ira Glass and E.B. White. My fingers grip the steering wheel and occasionally pinch my cheek to stay alert.
It’s a Thursday and school is almost out for the kids. Today I took my mom to a cobbler in downtown Oakland to fix some shoes she brought up from San Diego. She said she took them to a place down there where the guy looked at them and said, “There’s nothing we can do. Throw them away.” She was furious. She loves those little shoes. The cobbler in Oakland looked at them and said, “Unfortunately, we can’t repair these and I’ll tell you why.” She pointed out the dried out, cracking sole, the erosion of the heal, and carefully explained some other problems, looking over the glasses slipped down her nose. My mom didn’t like it, but she accepted it.
My daughter is in the other room taking old books on Electrical Engineering and ripping and pulling and cutting and folding, turning them into gifts with secret compartments. Everyone else is in bed. As I head that way myself, I pause and listen to the quiet night. Driving up the great San Joaquin Valley I watched to my left as the sun fell behind the coastal mountains and the moon rose more full bodied than I’ve ever seen it, hanging just above the dry rocks with a belly of sunshine.
Now, I think about that. My fingers twitch. I begin to write again.